Gov. Jaime Bonilla said the firm refused to sell Mexico some of the machines, which are badly needed to treat patients with coronavirus. “We said to them ‘if you want us to consider you essential, you have to provide some benefit to the people of Baja California, by selling us ventilators, because we need them,’” Bonilla said. “They said ‘no, we are not going to sell you anything, we are just going to continue to use your labor’.”
The northern Mexico border state of Baja California closed a plant run by Smiths Medical on Friday for allegedly refusing to sell ventilators to Mexican hospitals. Headquartered in Minneapolis, the company is owned by U.K.-based Smiths Group PLC.
Baja California Gov. Jaime Bonilla said the firm refused to sell Mexico some of the machines, which are badly needed to treat patients with coronavirus. Bonilla said the firm had continued to operate its assembly plant under the argument it provided an “essential” service when most non-essential plants have been ordered closed to combat the pandemic.
Bonilla ordered the Smiths Medical factory closed, because he argued it was providing no such essential service to Mexicans, and thus was not obeying health emergency contingency measures.